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Showing posts with label shelter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shelter. Show all posts

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Shaking, Slipping or Cursing?


Some of us are safe, but sure don’t feel like it at times. The night is dark and the storm rages all around, white, frothing waves are lashing against the rock where we have found shelter and some of the spray hits me, causing me to tremble. I am afraid; the storm is terrible will it sweep me off the rock? I hope not, but I see others clinging onto little jutting out areas and wonder how they will ever manage to hang on.
               Those up higher have found a sheltering cleft. No, it doesn’t keep us completely dry and although the wind reaches us, we needn’t fear being swept off the rock, but what about the others lower down? Why didn’t they get as close to the top of the rock and find a hiding place?
               The answer is sad: they found it too boring, it had been exciting, before the storm came, to be as close to the waves as possible, some even leaped in and swam around for a short while. But what about now? They are hanging on for dear life.  Someone is calling to them but the voice faint, tossed around by the mighty gale. Some of them looked up and reached for the rope offered and found safety, but I knew once the storm died down they would be soon dabbling in the ripples once again.
               As a shout came across the waves, I braced myself and leaned forward: was it a shout for help? No, someone, no, a whole boatful of passengers were cursing and shaking their fist at the rock. They were blaming the rock for the trouble they were in!
               The rock is Jesus, the sea is the world; there are many storms all around us. Where are you?
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Monday, May 30, 2016

The Geese Taught Him

There was once a man who did not believe in either the birth of Christ nor the spiritual meaning behind it, and was skeptical even of God. He and his family lived in a farming community. His wife was a devout believer and diligently raised her children in faith. He sometimes gave her a hard time about her belief and mocked her religious observances.

"It's all nonsense--why would God lower himself and become a human like us? Its such a ridiculous story," he   said.

One snowy day, she and the children left for church while he stayed home. After they departed, the winds grew stronger and the snow turned into a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire for the evening.

Then he heard a loud thump, something hitting against the window...and still another thump. He looked outside but could not see anything. So he ventured outside for a better view. In the field beside his house, of all the strangest things, a flock of geese. They were apparently flying to look for a warmer area down south, but they had been caught in the snowstorm. The storm had become to blinding and violent for the geese to fly or see their way. They were stranded on his farm, with no food or shelter, unable to do more than flutter their wings and fly in aimless circles. He had compassion for them and wanted to help them. He thought to himself, the barn would be a great place for them to stay. It is warm and safe; surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm. So he opened the barn doors for them.

He waited, watching them, hoping they would notice the open barn and go inside. Nevertheless, they did not not notice the barn or realize what it could mean for them. He moved closer toward them to get their attention, but they  just moved away from him out of fear.

He went into the house and came back with some bread, broke it up, and made a bread trail to the barn. They still did not catch on.

Starting to get frustrated, he went over and tried to shoo them toward the barn. They panicked and scattered in every direction except toward the barn. Nothing he did could get them into the barn where there was warmth, safety, and shelter. Feeling totally frustrated, he exclaimed, "why don't they follow me? Can't they see this is the only place where they can survive the storm? How can I possibly get them into the one place that can save them?"

He thought for a moment and realized that they just would not follow a human. He said to himself, "How can I possibly save them? The only way would be for me to become like those geese. If only I can become like one of them. They would follow me and I would lead them to safety."

At that moment, he stopped and considered what he had said. The words reverberated in his mind: if only I could become like one of them, then I could save them. Then, at last he understood God's heart towards mankind...and he fell on his knees.

There is a verse that goes with this story. John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Author unknown